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The Longest Now

Work expands to fill the space provided
Tuesday April 03rd 2012, 12:22 am
Filed under: %a la mod,indescribable,Uncategorized

I had a very difficult meeting this past Friday. The first few hours were quite effective; the last six were not, and could have been accomplished in two, but expanded to fill ten minuets more than the maximum amount of time it was alloted. In the end, the related discussion was cut five minutes short (out of a ten-hour day) and felt rushed, and was even a bit incomplete, despite suffering from what was in essence too much time.

I bought a universal Belkin power adapter today, and it came with a compact body, ten adapter tips, and *two* tiny, 110-page 2″x2″ manuals. As there is nothing about the adapter that isn’t intuitive for me, I wondered what cuold possibly be in a manual beyond the contact information for getting repairs and spares, and a quick tech diagram.

It turned out that they were a User Manual and a Quick Start Guide, 9 or 16 pages long, with half of those pages only half full, and printed in multiple languages. Both contained roughly the same information… the quick start guide was longer and slower than the user manual. I cannot do it beter justice than to recap the table of contents.

[User Manual: 13 langs]
1. Cover page
2. Important: Safety Information (full pg, 9 points)
3. Using the Laptop Power Adapter (quarter pg)
4. Technical Specifications (half pg, 12 items)
5. Getting Connected (1/8 pg, 5 steps)
6. Troubleshooting (1/4 pg, 5 steps)
7. Information (1/3 pg, 3 notes)
8. Information (full pg, tech support #s for 24 countries)
9. End matter.

[Quick Start Guide: 6 langs]
1. Cover page
2. Introduction, registration, safety information (full)
3. Important Safety Information (half, 8 pts)
4. Product safety (full, 12 pts)
5. Product safety (2/3, pts 13-17)
6. Using the Laptop Power Adapter (1/4 pg)
7. Technical Specifications (half pg, 12 items)
8. Getting Connected (1/8 pg, 5 steps)
9. Troubleshooting (1/3 pg, 5 steps)
10. Information (full, 3 sections)
11. Information (1/4, 2 bullets)
12. Information (1/2 pg, 3 sections)
13. Information (full, 1 of 3 sections)
14. Information (full, 2-3 of 3 sections)
15. Information (full, 24 country support #s)
16. End matter.

English was the only language shared by the two polyglot manuals. The other 17 languages had no overlap.

I’m not sure what these have in common beyond the subject, but surely tehre is something.

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